Local News Impact on the Economy

The worldwide economic crisis seems to be hitting us hard and the news is just not good. With all the bad economic reports, we are all concerned about the future of the economy. One thing that has not been mentioned is the value of gold. In fact, it seems that everybody is trying to buy up gold these days. The good news, though, is this global economic loss came in December alone, and therefore not January too.

So, now we know that newspapers have a lot to lose if they focus almost exclusively on local news and nothing else. However, how can we tell which stories are being reported by local news outlets and which are actually being fed by Associated Press or CNN? Let’s take a look at some of the recent examples. First of all, the Wall Street Journal has a long string of mistakes listed at the bottom of their home page. How can this be real journalism if most of their stories are just recycled boilerplate?

Another example is the New York Times. This newspaper has definitely published a lot of original reporting, but they have also published quite a lot of opinion pieces as well. Both of these are legitimate outlets, however. If the Wall Street Journal would rather focus on business issues than government, then I don’t blame them one bit. Their financial sections are probably better at this than regular newspapers are.

Now let’s take a look at the big boys of the news ecosystem. How are the big five television news networks doing lately? Surprisingly, they are doing quite well. They seem to be expanding their business at a rapid pace, especially in the wake of the New York media blackout. The good news is that they are still primarily a national outlet, so their scope of coverage is much wider than the New York media landscape. This makes for more diversity in their reporting, which is always a plus in any form of news.

Finally, there’s the online news. Yes, of all the different types of media forms that we are talking about, the web-based journalism has managed to be the one that is most transparent and most professional. You can tell from their writing that they are people who really care about their readers. They publish news stories that are in-depth, with added reporting that shows the reader not just the basic facts, but also why they should care. In other words, they don’t just cut and paste an article from an online source into their own paper.

As you can see, it is a diverse landscape, and it is up to all of us to keep our eyes open and our ears to the ground for stories that will truly impact our communities. I hope you will please consider all this and think on it. If you’d like to discuss the impact of the local news on our communities, or the impact of your local news outlets on the economy, then shoot me an e-mail and we’ll talk. Think on it.